How does science solve the problem of obesity

“Obesity is a medical condition in
which excess body fat has accumulated
to the extent that it may have an
adverse effect on health”
("Obesity." Wikipedia)
 In
the United States
(Gould 2012):
• 2 out of every 3 adults
 In
Germany (English
2011) :
• 13.7% of adults are
(62%) are overweight
or obese
• 36.4% are overweight
• Obesity-related illness
treatments cost an
Moderate obesity reduces
estimated $190.2
life expectancy by about 3
Severe obesity can shorten
a person’s life by 10 years.
(University of Oxford, 2009)
 1983
 Hoffmann-La
Roche &
Co., Switzerland
 First
developed to
control harmful
chemicals in the
Your stomach and
intestine have enzymes,
called lipases, that break
down fat into smaller
molecules, which are then
absorbed from your
digestive tract.
 Orlistat binds to lipases
keeps them from
digesting the eaten fat
 30% of the fat eaten is
blocked (Orlistat)
 Undigested fat is passed
out in feces
Dose is 3 tablets daily, lasts 12 hours, and can be taken for
1-2 years. Longer if
 Orlistat
body weight by an
average of 5-10%.
 The greatest rate
of weight loss
occurs within the
first six months of
 Not
more weight is
lost over 2 years
because only 30% of
the fat is blocked.
 Exercise must be
included in the weight
loss plan
 Losing fat faster can
actually be unhealthy
study found that patients taking Orlistat lost
more weight than those on a placebo: ~9kg
versus 6kg. (Davidson 1999)
 Research
showed that people
taking Orlistat
• had a 60% reduction
in the absorption of
Vitamin E (Melia 1996)
• displayed “vitamin D
levels that were
significantly reduced”
(McDuffie 2002)
 Of
those sampled
who were taking
Orlistat and no
vitamin supplement
(Xenical Indications
and Usage):
• 12% developed a low
level of Vitamin D
• 5.8% developed a low
level of Vitamin E
Vitamin D and Vitamin
A are absorbed with
the fat that you eat
Studies indicate that
Orlistat prevents your
body from absorbing
fat and therefore also
vitamins D and E
People taking Orlistat were
recommended by their doctors to also
take Vitamin supplements 2 hours
before or 2 hours after the use of
Orlistat to offset the effects of vitamin
Vitamins D helps your body
absorb calcium used in
making bone. The use of
Orlistat could lead to softer
bones that may be more
prone to breaking.
Vitamin E helps maintain a
healthy immune system,
protects cells from
antioxidants, and helps
produce blood cells. The
use of Orlistat could lead to
a weaker immune system.
•"Cholecalciferol (vitamin D3) Oral : Uses, Side Effects, Interactions, Pictures, Warnings
& Dosing - WebMD." WebMD, n.d. Web. 14 Nov. 2012.
< vitamin D3
•Davidson, Michael H., PhD. "Weight Control and Risk Factor Reduction in Obese
Subjects Treated for 2 Years With Orlistat." American Medical Association, 20 Jan. 1999.
Web. 14 Nov. 2012. <>.
•English, Cythnthia, and Nicolas Scharioth. "Half of Germans Are Obese and
Overweight." Half of Germans Are Obese and Overweight. Gallup, 27 Oct. 2011. Web. 13
Nov. 2012. <>.
•Galland, Leo, Dr. "Solving America's Obesity Crisis." Health. The Christian
Broadcasting Network, n.d. Web. 13 Nov. 2012.
•Gould, Danielle. "A Systems Approach to Solving America's Obesity Problem." Forbes.
Forbes Magazine, 11 May 2012. Web. 13 Nov. 2012.
McDuffie, J. R. "Result Filters." National Center for Biotechnology Information. U.S.
National Library of Medicine, July 2002. Web. 14 Nov. 2012.
Melia, A. T., and S. G. Koss-Twardy. "Result Filters." National Center for Biotechnology
Information. U.S. National Library of Medicine, July 1996. Web. 14 Nov. 2012.
"Obesity." Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation, 08 May 2014. Web. 07 Aug. 2014.
"Obesity Update 2012." Obesity Update 2012. Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development, n.d.Web. 13 Nov. 2012.
"Orlistat." Orlistat. EMedTV, n.d.Web. 14 Nov. 2012. <>.
•"Orlistat (Xenical)." -, 25 Apr. 2011. Web. 13 Nov. 2012.
•"Overweight and Obesity - BMI Statistics." Overweight and Obesity - BMI Statistics.
European Commission, Nov. 2011. Web. 13 Nov. 2012.
•" - Trusted Medical Information and Support." N.p., n.d.
Web. 14 Nov. 2012. <>.
•"Possible Interactions With: Vitamin D." University of Maryland Medical Center, n.d.
Web. 14 Nov. 2012. <>.
•Traister, Jeffrey. "Drug Interactions With Vitamin D Supplements." LIVESTRONG.COM,
22 Oct. 2010. Web. 14 Nov. 2012. <>.
•University of Oxford. "Moderate Obesity Takes Years Off Life Expectancy."
ScienceDaily, 20 Mar. 2009. Web. 07 Aug. 2014.
•"Xenical Indications and Usage." Xenical Indications, Contraindications and
Warnings. Pharmcom, n.d. Web. 14 Nov. 2012.
•"Xenical (Orlistat) Cost." Generic Xenical (Orlistat 60/120mg) $1.35 Pill. N.p.,
n.d. Web. 14 Nov. 2012. <>.

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